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DOLLY M. WILSON v. COMMONWEALTH PENNSYLVANIA (04/15/81)

decided: April 15, 1981.

DOLLY M. WILSON, PETITIONER
v.
COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA, UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION BOARD OF REVIEW, RESPONDENT



Appeal from the Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review in case of In Re: Claim of Dolly M. Wilson, No. B-163822.

COUNSEL

Kenneth A. Wise, with him Marian E. Frankston, for appellant.

Charles G. Hasson, Assistant Attorney General, with him Richard Wagner, Chief Counsel and Harvey Bartle, III, Acting Attorney General, for respondent.

Judges Craig, Williams, Jr. and Palladino, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Judge Palladino. Judge Wilkinson, Jr. did not participate in the decision in this case.

Author: Palladino

[ 58 Pa. Commw. Page 532]

This is an appeal from a Decision and Order of the Unemployment Compensation Board of Review (Board) which sustained a referee's decision denying unemployment compensation benefits to Dolly Wilson (Claimant) on the grounds that she was unemployed as a result of her own "fault," and thus, was ineligible for benefits pursuant to Section 3 of

[ 58 Pa. Commw. Page 533]

    the Unemployment Compensation Law (Law), Act of December 5, 1936, Second Ex. Sess., P.L. (1937) 2897, 43 P.S. § 752. We affirm.

Claimant was last employed as a clerk typist for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (Penn D.O.T.). On January 26, 1977, Claimant entered a plea of guilty in the Dauphin County Court to a charge of welfare fraud,*fn1 and was subsequently convicted.*fn2 Upon receiving notification of this conviction, Penn D.O.T. dismissed Claimant from her job, and thereafter Claimant filed an application for unemployment compensation benefits with the Bureau (now Office) of Employment Security (Bureau). On April 18, 1978, the Bureau issued a Notice of Determination denying benefits pursuant to Section 402(e) of the Law, 43 P.S. § 802(e), the willful misconduct provision. On appeal the referee affirmed the denial of benefits, but concluded that the proper statutory basis for doing so was Section 3 of the Law, which provides in pertinent part:

Security against unemployment and the spread of indigency can best be provided by the systematic setting aside of financial reserves to be used as compensation for loss of wages by employes during periods when they become unemployed through no fault of their own. . . . The Legislature, therefore, declares that in its considered judgment the public good . . . require[s] . . . the enactment of this act for the compulsory setting aside of unemployment reserves to be used for the benefit of persons

[ 58 Pa. Commw. Page 534]

    unemployed through no fault of their own. (Emphasis added.)

The Board subsequently affirmed the referee's decision, and the ...


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